Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Getting Past My Brain

Posted by Krista at 9:31 PM
(Click picture for source)

 Have you decided to join in with the 2013 Cleaning Grand Plan Challenge or as I refer to it "The Clean ALL the Things" challenge? I was talking with a friend about this challenge (she is going to attempt to Clean ALL the Things!) and one thing she pointed out to me is if we make this a 13 week plan, then it will repeat 4 times a year.

I thought this was fabulous! I've tried many, many times to do the monthly zones (from Flylady) and I always get so burnt out. I feel like I'm on a cleaning merry-go-round and there is never any breathing room. Certainly I  know how to take a break, but I guess what happens is that it leads to me feeling like a failure.
I do realize that this is just my perception and logically I'm not a failure because I don't stick with zones. I mean, clearly it's not the end of the world because I didn't vacuum under the couch every month.

I've read a lot about our mind and I know that when we continually perceive that we are failing it can have a profound effect on being able to move forward. We get stuck. And getting unstuck is a challenge, especially if we are going to try the same method or it has too many similarities to something else we've done and "failed" in completing to our expectations.

What happens is this: our lower brain (reactive brain) kicks in first and then communicates with our middle brain (deliberative brain) - checking memories and comparing. Together they lock out the top brain (reflective brain). And with the lower and middle brain in control they say "whoa! we're not doing that again, we fail!"and that increases the odds that we will fail if we try again. Physiologically our body goes into the fight or flight response.

I am hoping to by-pass the lower brain response by trying a new method that is just different enough that my odds of succeeding should increase. I have a couple of ideas on this.

First idea is this: I could tweak my current schedule and make it a 13 week (4 times a year) routine. I hopefully won't feel like I am on a constant cleanathon. I will tell myself the same things I wanted you to remember from my previous post - "If something on the list doesn't get done, it's okay!" Whatever I am able to accomplish in each round, I will check off. If some weeks I am unable to check everything off, then I will start with those unchecked things on the next round.

Second idea is this: Keep my schedule the way it is and when I'm done, I'm done. Sounds great right? The house will be "spring-cleaned" (hopefully) and I can be done until the end of August when the Christmas Grand Plan starts up. I think the only down-fall to this plan is if I am not able to cross everything off on the list in this round, I won't be going back to finish up until August! By then it will be like starting completely over.

It looks like the first idea is the best idea. I think it will take a lot of pressure off myself (yes, it's pressure I put on myself). Ultimately I want to get my home clean and organized, but if I can't complete a list all in one week, is it going to get fed up and clean/organize it's self? Oh I wish! No, it'll be there in 3 months for me to finish. Big deal. Let it go. I will do the best I can and no more. No outlandish expectations. No running myself ragged. No not living life because I have to get the cleaning done.

I found this great article on positive thinking and I thought I would pass it along and share with everyone. I especially love the 10 beliefs create positive emotions, better performance, and much better results. I think I'll try something like this when I'm doing jobs I usually dread by saying  "I'm the kind of woman that cleans the refrigerator!" Yeah! Go me! haha

What are areas that you can recognize your primal sense of fear takes over and keeps you from moving forward? I would love to hear some techniques that you use to get unstuck.

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